The Portland Mumfords - Charles Norhood Mumford Source A II - Letters - 10/12/1862. No envelope.

Fort Scott, October 12, 1862

Dear Wife:

I have not heard from you since I came here. I wrote you the next day after my arrival here. There has been time to get a letter and I am very anxious to hear from you. I should have written again before this if I could have done so but I have been on duty all the time since I came here. I have ridden 65 miles in the last 12 hours. I came from a place called Baxter Springs in Mo. the scene of the most terrible disaster that ever befel poor mortal man - I will give you the details. A week ago yesterday General Blunt with his staff and Body Guard started from here to Fort Smith in Arkansas. His, Blunt's, body guard consisted of Co. I of the 3rd Wis. Cav. and Co. A. of the 14th Kansas, also a brass band of 16 men all of them Wis. men and formerly our regimental band; when within 2 miles of Baxter Springs they were attacked by an overwhelming force commanded by the accursed guerilla chief Quantrill who had a force of some 500 while that of Blunt's was less than 200. The consequence was they slaughtered 87 of our men. Joseph Burlingame was killed. Over half were murdered with their own revolvers after they surrendered. I suppose Mr. Burlingame was killed after being taken from the fact of his being shot through the head. The band boys surrendered and were all shot through the head. They took 13 privates, all of my Regt., disarmed them and then placed them in line and deliberately shot each through the head. These were all taken together. I did not see all the dead but all I did see were shot through the head but one. It is exciting times here. All the citizens are under arms; at this post the men were under arms all last night. One of our pickets was killed last night and we are looking for an attack every hour. My duties have been most of the time since I came here to ride each day half around the camp to carry the counter sign to the picket guard. It is 50 miles around the whole line. I assure you I am quite tired out and write a very bad hand but hope you will be able to read it. There are only 13 of my Co. here. The balance are at Fort Smith, Arkansas. I do not expect pay till our Co. get together. Tell me how you get along and do you get any state money. Tell me all the news. Give my love to all. Kiss the baby for me. Write often. I may be where you cannot hear from me soon. God bless and protect you.

I am ever your affectionate husband,

C. N. Mumford